The Early Intervention Team is part of the Homelessness Prevention Team in the Housing Needs Department at Oxford City Council.

The team works with any resident of Oxford City to assess needs due to issues with the affordability of a tenancy. This might be due to rental shortfalls such as the Benefit Cap, Local Housing Allowance or the Bedroom Tax, or issues with Universal Credit.

The team will offer their client support in resolving these issues, agree on an action plan and consider them for an award of Discretionary Housing Payment.

Support can include:

  • referral to employment support agencies
  • resolving issues with Universal Credit
  • referral to debt and benefits advice

They are also responsible alongside the other homelessness prevention teams for duties placed on local authorities to prevent homelessness under the Housing Act 1996 Part 7 (as amended). The team works with certain clients to ensure that the client receives support to prevent homelessness.

If you are struggling to pay your rent and bills, and are just a bit confused about what your options are now that your benefits have changed, then we can talk to you about your circumstances, assess the situation and see what options may be available to improve your situation, which can include

  • look at options for maximising income for example by applying for any other benefits you may be eligible for or help you pay your rent with discretionary housing payments (DHPs)
  • provide advice on finding housing that fits your needs through downsizing or mutual exchange
  • offer advice and support, including guidance from other advice agencies in the city
  • give you advice and support with managing your Universal Credit claim.

If you think you might be affected by benefit changes or are struggling to afford your tenancy, we'd be happy to hear from you.

Our customer service standards set out what you can expect from us when you ask us for help. See downloads for Customer Service Standards.

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Contact the Early Intervention Team

Address: Oxford City Council
Town Hall
St Aldate's
Oxford
OX1 1BX

Telephone: 01865 252755